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-- i am of virginia resident and voter. it is a tough day for tim kaine tomorrow as his successor gets beat by a dozen points in a state that he won and obama won by six points. i think the democrats will lose it by 12 or so. in new jersey, republicans might when there by a couple points. democrats should not kid themselves. it does not mean the republicans will win everything in 2010. one-party government in washington -- something president obama is over-reaching against the democratic congress. moderate republicans, conservative republicans. that is their goal. one was there and last time when
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there was a big divide? in 1976 when ronald reagan ran a primary challenge moderate republican president, gerald ford, barely lost. he did not even give his full part in support to gerald ford. 1978 i remember a friend of mine, a young activist, challenge the liberal republican incumbent in new jersey and loss to build bradley. al d'amato won the general election. there was a huge amount of turmoil board what came out? reagan victory and republican takeover of the senate in 1980. takeover of the senate in 1980. tom will and a party isn't bad. obviously it is problematic if you are running a campaign. it is easier not to have a primary and people grumbling and complaining. but i think it is a sign of health, grassroots activity, citizen getting involved. i don't think people will go off the deep end. the fact there was a challenge to the 23rd district in new york
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doesn't mean conservatives will not accept a more moderate candidate which they will in delaware, with mark -- mike casel. the left keeps hoping that conservatives will be suicidal. they will not be. i do think you need the conservative populists's energy and independence from washington and ideas. i think conservatives in the that, republicans need that. you can't just the top down rehashed out -- ideas outside the beltway. tim kaine can console himself -- i did it will be a bad defeat, they will win those races, he can consoled myself by hoping that the republican party will self-destruct i don't think it will happen. host: barbara, long beach new york. independent line. are you there? caller: yes, i am. this is my first time. i have been trying to get a hold of you. i want to know, how come they have to demonize pelosi?
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how come every time one party wants to do something, they pick somebody and they work on that person? we all have to live together. it is time for all of this foolishness. we do need some kind of medical help. host: broadening your question. you referred to swine flu democrats. what do you mean? guest: nancy pelosi's plan, she stood up and introduced it. we say it is the pelosi plan and it is bad legislation. swine flu democrats, trying to make the point that the democrats want to be the party, given the with the swine flu epidemic or emergency as the president legally dubbed it a few weeks ago, that they want to be the party, a huge expansion of government run health care. are they that confident the government can do an excellent
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job? obama -- we can figure out there is over use, under use and is part of oklahoma, we can adjust the payment rates. there is huge central planning in the obama administration and among democrats like nancy pelosi and henry waxman and george miller -- it is just a fact. they don't deny it. they said the other day we need more government. let's have a debate. i don't think it is so great. host: here is georgia. judy, a republican collar. caller: hello? yes, sir. i want to talk about my husband. hello? host: go ahead, judy. caller: my husband is 53 years old and he is totally disabled. the courts ruled and disabled from day one. he worked for 30 years at a plant and his back was " we
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messed up and only thing they could do for him was put paint shops in his back. well, he got his social security disability but he doesn't have medicaid or medicare, they said it would be two years before he is eligible even though the court ruled in totally disabled. so he don't have access to medical care at all. why is that? why is it when a united states citizen is declared disabled they have to wait time before they can get medicaid or medicare? host: 8 collar like that, better worse off? -- a caller like that. .
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go ahead. caller: good morning, michigan. host: michigan. i'm sorry. caller: i just wanted to say the last time i checked, unemployment was 19.5%, and my husband, who just had his 29th anniversary at the company he worked at has been laid off and is losing his mind. i would be crying if i thought it would do any good, but it will not.
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he is doing everything he can to find a job. as soon as he sees something in the newspaper, he goes there. he is so talented, he can fix anything, but he is 65 years old, too, and that is a problem. a few weeks ago, senator lugar? he was on "newsmakers" and the thing that really got to me, everybody keeps saying, "what are the republican plans?" now you are talking about breaking down barriers between states. i am all for that. i wish we could do that right now and get on with it.
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he was talking, and they have to ask him twice, and he said something like -- basically, he was talking about the welfare fund -- i forget what you called it. they were going to juggle those are around and find a way to send a check out to these poor people so that they could buy their insurance. if you think sending a check to someone on welfare is a good idea, you are nouts. guest: i am sorry about her husband. that area has pretty horrible unemployment. unemployment is bad everywhere. that is why i come back to the notion of president obama trying to rally bipartisan support for
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stimulus and the job growth, reducing the payroll tax. reducing other barriers to hire people. i think there is bipartisan support for that. the caller is right, the government cannot just continue to print money. the key is to get the economy growing again. that will take care of all lot of problems. distributing money to people will not solve any problems. host: next phone call. virginia. caller: i wonder why our government cannot put a lot of the unemployed people to work. there are so many unemployed. if i was watching "60 minutes"
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and how many billions of dollars are being fraudulently spent with medicare and they do not have the employees in washington to correct all of the fraud. why can they hire and train these people? your guest last week talked about the $8,000 credit. that is so fraudulent. there are people who are claiming that money when they did not have any proof that they bought a home the fraud in the country is unbelievable. i do not know why the government cannot hire people to take care of this misspending and fraud. it does not make sense to me. i know -- i voted for obama --
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he said that he was going to help these people. host: 2 are you going to vote for tomorrow? caller: time voted republican, absentee. mark warner is the best governor we have had since i have lived here. i have lived here 22 years. he should have been president. caller: i think there are a lot of voters like that in virginia. by definition, i suppose, there are some people switching from one side to the other. if president obama said we had a problem with fraud in medicare, i will be going to washington to
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hire more federal employees dedicated to saving money, they would be able to weed out incredible amount of abuse. i think many republicans would agree with that, but that is not what he is doing, he is expanding the system. host: you have a critical piece on the bill in the "weekly standard." you have described it as the worst bill ever. they conclude with this --
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when you go to that extreme? guest: it could have big and bad consequences. when we have a health care system that is rickety because we are spending so much, it is one heck of a time to be imposing this. i think, frankly, republicans could come in to fix it in 2010 and 2012, but a lot of these things are not so easy to fix. we are in a bad recession, people are not hiring. and they are going to keep budget taxes on wealthy people. secondly, the bush tax cut to expire and taxes will go up again in 2011. is that going to help hiring as well as producing the debt?
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that is the problem we are looking at. i think we can get bipartisan support for these types of problems, but instead he is focusing on other things than the economy. host: some say that what we need now is more government spending to jump-start the economy. why do you think their argument is wrong? guest: their opinion is not entirely different. they are also worried about a weak recovery. even some of the obama even some of the obama cheerleaders, supporters host: but their solution is 180 degrees from you. guest: i am happy to have that debate, and i think the evidence would be on the side of a lot of very respected conservative economists. we will all right our articles
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and publish our articles and make that point, but i do not think the obama stimulus package plus his health-care bill, which i think is the two things the obama administration is trying to do, plus cap and trade, and that is done, and that has not done much good, and according to christina romer, it is petering out. the next thing he wants to do, health care, the huge climate- change bill, they are huge burdens on the economy. they are not going to help the economy. host: john, on the republican line, go ahead. caller: i have a problem with everything that is going on. i am on medicare, and obama, the doctors are refusing to take it now, and i do not know what i am going to do, because i am totally disabled, and that is the question i wanted to ask you.
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what are, you know, his ideas? guest: more doctors are refusing to take medicare, and that is because the reimbursement rates are much lower than the private reimbursement rate, and doctors -- is just not tenable sometimes, medicare patients, and i think it is unfortunate, but the solution is not to cut medicare reimbursement rates more, which is what the pelosi bill does, and the pelosi bill does it with a wink and a nod. burdened by this bill, basically. that is what is appalling about it. this bill does not help average americans with the quality of care, cost of care. it is a huge government program. it does cover some of the uninsured, but otherwise, it is
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just a burden on the economy and physicians, and ultimately, that for all of us who are patients. host: next phone call. caller: what a thrill, i am talking to the television star bill kristol. you are the best at propaganda. fixed news was greeted by neocons to create war, and it worked like a charm. you convince people to vote against their own best interest. it is magical and i have to say you are one of the best. what i find hysterical is fixed news is full of characters like newt gingrich, oliver north, dick morris, john bolten, karl
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rove, all people who were run out of town on a rail and then end up as the all stars -- the pundits on fox. you sit there with a straight face and say our military, the way we fight is elegant. those people who called with relatives who could not get health care, you may have just said just let them eat cake. you are too much. guest: nothing to respond to. i suppose you also believe we should not have gone to war in afghanistan. i think both times we were in afghanistan was justified. that is it. that is all the warmongering that the clinton and obama
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administration have done so far. i think we have helped the people of iraq and afghanistan by being there. i suppose the collor thinks we should just let terrorists established -- caller think we should just let terrorists established bases here and get dangerous weapons. host: before you go, comments on the key governor races in new jersey and the virginia? caller: everyone is -- guest: everyone is expecting the republicans to pick up a seat in virginia. new gears to will be pretty tough. -- new jersey will be pretty tough.
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i think the republican, christy, will win in new jersey. if you look at the demographics, his support seems to be a bit bigger than the john corzine. -- than jon corzine. it is a very hard place to read. in new york, i think the conservatives will win as well. if the conservative candidate
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-- they did not help of a defect of republican opposition. it is a tough race. if hoffman can win in a district that obama carries, if you are a democrat in the house from a district that mccain carried, you might think, he beat all of the democrats here? >> "washington journal" begins each day at 7:00 a.m. as voters go to the polls in new jersey and virginia and other states, we will look at some of those races on our next "washington journal." now, a representative from "in
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the nation." >> joining us is the editor and publisher of "the nation." thank you for being with us. in the latest addition, you and your husband had an interview with mikhail gorbachev. you look back at the fall of the berlin wall. who wore what does he give the most credit for the fall of communism? guest: gorbachev speaks about the democratic reforms he launched in his own country which he believes triggered some of the uprisings in germany, for example, and speaks about the importance that he gathered with eastern leaders after he came to power in 1985 and said, these are your countries.
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this was critical after a time of soviet control of this eastern european bloc. he criticcredits run ragged in a partner to end the cold war. i think this is important to highlight. the reagan library, until recently, would have given credit to the two men who started this initiative. the two of them transcended ideological differences. gorbachev is actually funny in the interview when reagan called him a bolshevik, and he called run on meghan and dinosaur. yet, they've worked together to reduce the nuclear danger. it has become a cliche of sorts,
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but gorbachev is a man who changed the world and used his power to change the soviet union to make alternatives to the cold war, the nuclear arms race. there is a very interesting section in the interview where he talks about the george bush senior driving to the airport with him. bush said that reagan was a conservative but was supported by blockheads and dunnies -- dummies. in reagean, you have someone who
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will do business with you because he will never be accused of betraying u.s. interest. quarter job is a true visionary. he has great respect for george bush as well as george shultz, who we talk about in the interview. host: they conclude the u.s. won the cold war. why is that? guest: at the end of the cold war, there was a view that we had won the war. i think it is important to understand no one won the cold war. you had two countries who spend trillions of dollars on what? arms? not on creating more jobs or a more just future. mikhail gorbachev had this idea, and continues to have these hyper-militarized relations in the world.
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there was a view that we could be the sole superpower. in these last few years, i think what we have seen are the limits of power. in the world we live in today, military might is not equipped to deal with the great challenges of our time, whether it is a nuclear proliferation, terrorism, genocide, pandemic disease is. military might is not going to do with some of these things. he was someone who was a visionary in his own time, maybe too early. but he remains one today in speaking about the critical issues of demilitarization. he speaks in the interview about afghanistan. i think our president takes the right time -- this is the most
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solemn obligation a president has, sending men and women into combat. accusations up dead during seem quite absurd -- of dithering seem quite as absurd to me. when he came to power, the soviets did not have many troops, and they left because they realized they were going to put more men into a deft way. and i was in moscow watching television when the last soviet troops came across the bridge. gorbachev found a way to explain to his country when they needed to do that. some believed it led to the unraveling of the soviet empire, but i disagree. i think the soviet union would
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still be with thus is not for h. he was a man who's on the limits of one system who saw democracy, who began the ending of censorship in the country. today, he speaks out against what he sees as the dede mocratization and is even helping one of the democratic newspapers in the country. he remains a force in his own way and runs a foundation which is a cause i-presidential library -- quasi-presidential
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library. host: katrina vanden heuvel is with us until 9:30 this morning. what did you take away from this interview? guest: he made a comment in the bush years when he felt like the country was living through its own stagnation. he meant the this country deserves leadership, which would create a true democracy, a more perfect union that this country could become, that it needed revival of democratic reforms, and in president bush, he saw, you know, he sought a man -- military might, who was condoning torture as a u.s.
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instrument of engagement with the world, and i think gorbachev and some many, not only run the world, but those who voted for barack obama last year -- we are almost one year on, are just appalled by what was happening to the possibility, the promise of america. at the end of the interview, he believes that barack obama, in the capacity for dialogue that obama represents is a very good choice for this country, and he did have a chance to meet with president obama, i believe, in washington at a private meeting and also when obama was in moscow in july for a summit meeting with medvedev. host: albuquerque, independent caller, go ahead. caller: thank you so much for c- span's. i have the most profound suspect for you. i am a subscriber, and i have been for at least 10 years.
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i feel like i had been around reconstruction with all that has transpired in the last decade. i just finished reading your article in the latest "nation." obama's faithful choice. i hope that you will touch on that a bit, your thoughts on afghanistan. i hope and pray that at some point in the near future i will the gathering of the funds to be joining you on one of your nation cruises and have the pleasure of shaking your hand and a meeting some of my other well-respected figures such as tom hartman. thank you for your appearance this morning. guest: thank you for your call. her reference to reconstruction, the nation had been around for 144 years, started by men who were committed to abolitionism. anyone who is interested in a "
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the nation" cruz, go to our website. we did a special issue on afghanistan last week, and i made reference to this earlier when i spoke about the dramatic midnight visit the president made to dover air force base. i found that to be very moving. i hope and that he finds the political courage, taking seriously the most solemn responsibility president has, commanding men and women to war, to understand if one supports president obama as a reform president, he ithe reform agende is bringing to america, throughout history, reforms have been killed. i am thinking about lyndon johnson and vietnam.
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people will say, what is the alternative? we need to be secure. the alternative is not to send thousands of women and conventional force mobilization to afghanistan but to think of common sense counterterrorism measures, if in fact, our strategy is to dismantle and disrupt al-qaeda. extensive policing, border control, intelligence, and of course, regional diplomacy. a foreign occupation has never solved the conflict of afghanistan. we lay down in our issue alternatives to what is now being discussed and we challenge answer to the white house to expand the range of solutions because on the table right now
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our counterterrorism with all of these droned attacks. or the counterinsurgency strategy which general mcchrystal is pushing. i think that is a slippery slope. there has never been a time in history when generals have said, we do not need enough. my hope is president obama will have the political courage to say we are going to begin irresponsible exit strategy and turn to other ways to secure the region to bring security to our country, not through sending more men and women. foreign service, a decorated marine, leading civilian construction officers, we need
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them to speak up clearly on how we need to help afghanistan. if you support president obama, and i do, i hope he has the political courage to look back in history, look forward to what kind of renewal he could bring to the country which needs to be done. host: oakland, california. jenny on the republican line. caller: i appreciate everything you are doing for this nation. my comment this morning is that when you have ta house that has been totally demolished and
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someone buys it as a fixer-upper and tries to bring it back to its original state, i feel like that is what has happened to president obama. the republican party destroyed the country. with him picking up and inheriting this mess, any logical person would understand that you are going to have to spend money to fix that. you cannot just stay in a house that has been destroyed. you have to spend money to get the home back to its original form better state. -- or better state. guest: you are right, and i
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liked your metaphor. president obama inherited the ravaged economy as well as other problems. he had started to pull the country together. you speak about building our home. he has tried, after 30 years that the government is the problem, not the solution, to restore role of government as an effective problem solver. he speaks about that in important ways. his health care bill is part of bringing security to people in this insecure economy. there are two issues that concern me, moving forward. one is his recovery bill. it was too small in scale, largely because he was trying to get republican support, and for the most part, they have
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declared an all-out war on his presidency, trying to cripple him. that was far more to get the economy going. we need a jobs program. joblessness could undermine his programs, his presidency. this is the other underside of the presidency. too many people believe the government is on the slide of the bankers, when in fact, what the president is trying to do is put the government on the side of the people, but because he resuscitated them the way he did without restructuring them, by using taxpayer money without demanding that they lend, they are now using those taxpayer dollars to continue their
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business. this is a beltway of session. -- obsession. we need to not pay attention to the deficit now because consumers are not spending, businesses are not investing. when an economy begins to recover, then making focus on that. finally, afghanistan. yes, president obama inherited this war. we have been there longer than we thought world war ii. however, this is quickly becoming obama's war, and he needs to say that this is something that he inherited, i need to make this world more secure. he is a master of speaking, of the presidential pulpit. if he can educate a nation, yes he will be attacked, but there
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will be unlikely allies, like george will. thomas friedman is speaking clear of thly about reducing our footprint overseas and working more at home. host: luke from mississippi on the independent line. caller: i remember seeing president bush threatening the taliban after 9/11, saying that he was going to attack them. they had an islamic government in afghanistan, so they could not hand over anyone without any
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evidence. president bush said he was not negotiating. what type of strategy is this? they had former teledyne officials who are now working with the afghan government covering every move that usama bin laden made. how could they have an attack like this without everyone know when? if bush had the evidence, why would he let them hand him over and said of sending troops over there? we have been there for eight years. guest: we have been there for eight years, and what have we accomplished? it dismantling al qaeda it is our goal, -- if dismantling of that it is our goal, we should
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not be fighting the way that we are -- if the dismantling of al qaeda is our goal, we should not be fighting the way that we are. what about somalia, what about yemen? these are places where al qaeda is also reported to be operating. host: do you think the war on terrorism is now being properly focused in afghanistan and portions of pakistan? guest: i think those are key areas, but also come in pakistan, you have -- but also, in pakistan, you have the taliban confronting al qaeda.
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i do not know if hillary clinton's lecturing is helpful. their anti-americanism is quite alive and you are seeing an upsurge of democracy in the middle class. there is a desire to take on extremist terrorist forces, and the u.s. lecturing pakistan is creating a backlash. but there are other parts of the world where we have al qaeda. by the way, colin powell talked about the numbers involved here. these are small numbers. we are fueling the very forces we are trying to defeat through these conventional military structures. i think we would do better to understand terrorism to confront
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this in non-military ways. host: next phone call. guest: thank you for taking my call. my first question is, don't you think the catholic church is not getting any its due, in terms of trying to bring communism to an end? the polish were not under communist rule in the 1970's, communist rule in the 1970's, but then our pane and then, secondly, it seems that wall street and the bankers
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systematically looted in the middle class. your comments. thank you. guest: i will try to find a thread there -- two very different. it is not just wall street. we have got to keep our eyes on wall street, but you had a collision with wall street and our political system. you had deregulation. you had a federal reserve, which allowed all of these baubles to rise. you had predatory lending permitted by government and pursued by wall street -- which allowed all of these baubles -- bubbles. paul volcker, and the former head of the bank of england, mervyn king, talking about important registration, and for listeners, it is the lines between them so you do not get
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banks that are too big to fail, but, yes, we have seen the looting of the middle class, and what we are not seeing coming of washington at this stage is a real plan to restore a financial sector, but one that is shrunken. one as paul krugman likes to say, plain vanilla, so it is not involved in all of these things, in which serves the real economy. not the other way around. the real economy should not be serving wall street or the titans of wall street. be all about the real economy. that is where the president had lost his focus. some of that may be because he talked about bringing in a team of rivals, as abraham lincoln did. in fact, he brought in people
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who were pretty much marinated in wall street culture. if you look back to tim geithner spends most of the time on the phone with, it is the head of citibank, morgan stanley, but he should be spending as much time with those people making the real economy work. anyways, on the catholic church, there is no question they played a role at the time. it figures specifically in poland, but i go back to the fact that in 1985, maccallum corp. -- mikhail gorbachev said that he was not going to intervene. these are your countries. in 1989, when the soviet union had troops in germany, it did not use force. the belief that you could not by force control the future
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destinies of those countries in europe was very much a factor of his vision that you needed, insecurity, and architecture of mutual security. he had the power to do what he believed, and that was a rare combination, when you have someone who was, in many ways a heretic for having unorthodox ideas. by the way, he came down of one of the most rigid doctrinaire systems, communism. how he has founded a social democratic party in russia, how someone emerged from a system like that, should give us hope that other people will emerge.
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i do not believe barack obama is the messiah, but he is certainly one of the best swimmers and our political system. host: concord, oklahoma. bill on the democratic line. caller: i have a question for c- span. we voted out the republicans, we do not want to hear from them. they gave everything to the rich. that is what they tried to do from the time clinton was in there, when the republicans took over. clinton was doing the right thing raising taxes and getting the country back on solid ground. now my question.
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where were you in 2003 when we had all of our troops and equipment sitting on the kuwait border and we were going to attack iraq because they had weapons of mass destruction? i spend 20 years in the army -- spent 20 years in the army. i knew they did not have any weapons of mass destruction. host: any thoughts for the viewer? guest: you make some interesting points. "the nation" was one of the few media outlets to oppose the war
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in iraq. there are now many the johnny- come-latelys, but we did not believe that this idea of the preventive war was contrary to international law of the american tradition. in retrospect, the debacle in iraq is one that we need to spend time reflecting on, especially as we are on the cusp of a decision in afghanistan. we see an ongoing ethnic strife in iraq. yes, you wanted to get rid of the dictator, but my view is the people of iraq should have done that, and what had come over time. in any case, you are also reflecting on the fact that putting people in harm's way for
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ideological reasons, which the bush/cheney administration did, is a terrible breach of responsibility. under dick cheney, if i might add, i find he continues to roam the landscape and speak out. i suppose it is up to him, it is the whole family. it is their right. if dick cheney had pursued another four years, we may not be in democracy. but i thought it was interesting that we sell released transcripts of his police deposition with the special prosecutor, clearly perjuring himself in the scooter libby case. i credit this group in washington for continuing the civil suit.
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i think it should be pursued. accountability is critical. on that front, -- i understand obama has limited political capital -- but i think that we need to look back at what the bush administration did, what they did with the torture regime. without looking back, it is difficult to move forward. while we are all focused on the obama administration moving forward, one of your viewers made a good point that he inherited a destroyed house. it is frightening to think, s sarah palin emerges on the stage soon with her book, of what another four years of republican rule would have meant. we are going to need several decades to repair the damage that has been done. host: we are going to go to the
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republican line now. asheville, north carolina. caller: it is amazing that you have someone that knows everything. i have a problem with the words she used earlier. we have various problems in the country and they are created by both republicans and democrats. now we have democrats in control and you are talking about taking several decades for america to get over the bush /cheney legacy. how long do you think it is going to take us, if we are even able to get over what obama is doing to the country? host: along those lines, a comment from twitter --
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guest: first of all, i think i wake up every morning with more questions than answers. i think we have a transformative problem in the country. i think there is a problem that too many of our political leaders, as i alluded to earlier -- every day, we have the mugging of the common good. we have forces of lobbyists, big money, corrupting our political process. we also have the power of the people. we also have some good people in congress. i hate to throw the baby out with the bathwater, because there are some pretty decent public servants. in terms of the debt fetishism,
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i believe we have from the country of its potential promise for these tax cuts for the rich, wars that are not paid for, which should not be fought. if you want to get technical, our gdp ratio is pretty small compared to other western democracies. i think we deserve human security. by that, i mean affordable health care, child health care. decent, quality roads, bridges, all kinds of the attributes that belong to a real democracy that believes in its people. one that allows colleges to be affordable, providing quality education. this is the crucial imperative
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of our time. host: silver spring, maryland. walter is a democrat. guestcaller: i am proud to speao you today. i am from cameroon. i believe the american people are very proud and they love their country but i have a couple of questions. the first is, why is this a problem of deficit when we are spending trillions fighting a war? having a deficit for our troops to come back home , backmen taking it -- handicapped men taking it up.
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host: i am going to let you go. we have some other callers to get to. guest: i think he was suggesting that we need to spend more money on our own country -- that we are squandering money on wars that do not need to be fought. it is a matter of priorities. overturn this discussion is what our american priorities should be -- overarching this discussion is what our american priorities should be. i am always struck by the way that this cbo pops up in the newspaper every day. it is like the tyranny of the cb 0 combined with the expression "bend occurred" when it refers to health care -- what are we
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soaring health-care plans when we are not even scoring what it would cost to go into afghanistan? i think we need to think about our priorities and who we want to be. yes, there are problems. for many, the defense program is an issue. if we took that money and apply it to the jobs problem, it could help. but that is not on the radar. but that is not on the radar. even under president host: would you agree today about the article in the "the washington times" that it was time for liberals to give up the health-care option, as the debate over health care begins in congress this week? guest: know. i think the public option is a comi
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